ASHTABULA -- A northeast Ohio man who was one of the first blacks to serve in the U.S. Marine Corps has been honored by his country nearly 70 years after his service ended.
The (Cleveland) Plain Dealer reported that 87-year-old Lenel Moore's family cheered, applauded and wept Saturday as Moore received the Congressional Gold Medal in his hometown of Ashtabula.
Moore received the medal from the members of the 3rd Battalion, 25th Marines headquartered in Brook Park.
Congress authorized the medals for the first black Marines, known as the Montford Point Marines.
They joined after President Franklin Roosevelt issued an executive order in 1942 to open up enlistment regardless of race.